Posted by Irene Ojo-Felix | October 24th, 2023

Anok Yai on Redefining A New Era of Supermodels

Whether by chance, manifestation, or destiny, Anok Yai’s path to supermodel status has been forged by a mindset determined to learn all she could from an industry she unknowingly influenced with her debut. Since opening Prada F/W 18, something no black model had done in over 20 years since Naomi Campbell, her meteoric rise has been attributed to an unstoppable work ethic that, since her start, has had her on the top global runways of note, the covers of influence, and the ads of luxury’s highest players. Discovered at Howard University’s Homecoming in a now-viral Instagram image, the South Sudanese American model has always understood the power of social media and has used her platform to stand up for herself, pushing against straightening her natural hair and the carbon-copy beauty that once plagued catwalks. Now, as she expands into new ventures that include brand deals, a completed artist residency at Kehinde Wiley’s Black Rock Senegal, and the occasional music video cameo, the new era super is taking control of her business as she prepares for her next evolution. Shot by Mauricio Sierra, sat with Yai in Paris during a hectic fashion week schedule to discuss the performance of runway, not being afraid to ask for creative control or be opinionated, and the importance of being her own business.

Editor in Chief: Stephan Moskovic
Managing Editor and interviewer: Irene Ojo-Felix
Director: Mauricio Sierra
Editing: Aston Em + ArkHaus
Production: John Willment-Knowles and Lucía Cano at ArkHaus (Mexico City)
Post Production: Caffeine Post
Special thanks to No Smoking, SAFE Mgmt, and Christopher Michael at Egos and Icons